Phone

[Updated] Galaxy Note 10 has dedicated second speaker on top, not IR blaster

Update 2: We apologize for backtracking again, but we’ve now been told by someone who actually tested a Note 10 by playing a YouTube video that the opening next to the SIM slot really is a dedicated speaker (we’re told the sound was deafeningly loud, but we’d rather test that for ourselves). The third microphone for the camera’s Zoom-in Mic feature is placed next to the camera assembly (see this image).

Update: It turns out that the hole next to the SIM slot is actually a third microphone and not a dedicated speaker. The third microphone has a larger opening than the others as it’s used for the Note 10’s Zoom-in Mic feature, which enhances sound coming from the subject you’re zooming in on when recording videos. The earpiece still works as the second speaker for stereo sound, similar to the Galaxy S10 and other Galaxy flagships with stereo speakers (with the exception of the Galaxy Fold).

Original story follows

The small hole next to the SIM slot on the top of the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+ is a dedicated second loudspeaker, not an IR blaster. When renders of Samsung’s new flagships had first leaked online, many had assumed that extra hole could be an IR blaster as it was not something we’d seen on any Galaxy device ever since Samsung decided to stop adding an IR blaster to its smartphones. However, that’s not the case.

That dedicated speaker should result in better stereo sound (especially with Dolby Atmos enabled) on the Note 10 and Note 10+, along with higher volume levels as we saw on the Galaxy Fold, which also has two dedicated loudspeakers instead of having the earpiece double up as the second speaker. Unfortunately, we were unable to test the Note 10’s audio quality at Samsung’s Unpacked launch because of all the hubbub, but we will be fixing that as soon as we get our hands on a review unit.

And yes, there is an earpiece on the Galaxy Note 10 duo, although it’s extremely hard to spot because of the small bezel. Samsung is also bundling new and improved USB Type-C AKG earphones with active noise cancellation in the box, but it’s not offering a Type-C to 3.5mm dongle in every market, which is sure to disappoint many. The company also has given some dubious reasons for why the headphone jack was removed, instead of admitting that it just wants to push consumers towards buying the Galaxy Buds.

  • Model: SM-N970F
  • Dimensions: 151.0 x71.8x7.9mm
  • Display: 6.3"(160.02mm) Super AMOLED
  • CPU: Exynos 9825
  • Camera: 12 MP, CMOS F2.2 Telephoto & 12MP F1.5/F2.4 77° & 16MP F2.2 123° Ultra-wide

  • Model: SM-N975F
  • Dimensions: 162.3x77,2x7.9mm
  • Display: 6.8"(172.7mm) Super AMOLED
  • CPU: Exynos 9825
  • Camera: 12 Ultra Wide: 16MP F2.2 (123°) & Wide-angle: 12MP 2PD AF F1.5/F2.4 OIS (77°) & Telephoto: 12MP F2.1 OIS (45°) & DepthVision Camera: VGA

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DareDevil01
DareDevil01

A simple test would be to play music and cover the top hole, then the earpiece…

locarno
locarno

“which also has two dedicated loudspeakers”

So it have 2 loud and 1 earpiece speaker ?

“instead of admitting that it just wants to push consumers towards buying the Galaxy Buds.”

Samsung is not Apple.

” is placed next to the camera assembly (see this image).”

Wow. it is hard to see.

Hambone01
Hambone01

It’s not a secondary speaker, I tested in the store and blocking it makes no difference to sound quality

locarno
locarno

So what it is ?

kav946
kav946

I saw a video (may or may not have been on this site) that said that with the directional microphone zoom… since that is what the thing is we are talking about… “you can point it at the drummer in a concert and hear only the drums”. First, I doubt it would be that focused, and second, the sound at a concert comes from the speakers, not the instruments directly.

The moral of the story.. be careful with expectations from the zoom microphone, your imagination is likely far better than the reality.

Naadrius
Naadrius

Hey, sammobile the third microphone is actually on the side of the rear camera cut out. There is a tiny gap there 🙂
That is being used for Zoom-in mic feature.

As for the extra hole on top, I am not sure.

I was told this info by a samsung employee

Usaamakhan
Usaamakhan

I hope you’re right because I was happy to hear there being a second dedicated loudspeaker!

Gunter2
Gunter2

I’m happy there’s no ir blaster. Everything has moved to app based control anyway. Nothing I have runs with infra red, except the option is on the TV but we use the app. Just some information for those interested. A friend pre-ordered Note10 plus in a Samsung Store in Turkey and is getting free Galaxy buds as the gift. Not bad. In Germany, I don’t know what’s on offer, if anything.

locarno
locarno

So you use app for TV ? Not traditional remote ?

stondec
stondec

I was going to get the Note 10+ but will pass because of the absence of the IR blaster. Upgrading to the Note 10 already means call recoding apps won’t work, I was hoping for the IR blaster as a consolation feature. I’ve kept my Note 9 on Android Oreo and I’ll keep my Note 9 for now.

Gunter2
Gunter2

I feel your pain but you’ll never see an IR blaster on a Samsung flagship again. They’re investing heavily in smart home devices where IR is redundant. All appliances in our home are now app controlled, we don’t use an IR blaster for anything and everything is going that way in the medium term. I know it’s sad, particularly for oldtimers to accept that some cherished technologies eventually die, but they do. I’m still crying over the headphone jack disappearing but that’s progress I suppose.

o0MHJ0o
o0MHJ0o

Don’t be sad that you’re moving with the times!!! The IR blaster has long since been made redundant.
As far back as 2014 Samsung has made all its appliances Wi-Fi enabled! If you can afford the Note10, then why on earth would one still have tech in the house from the 90s!?
And yeah, you can easily turn things off and on via Wi-Fi now too. Or in my case, I’ll jus ask Google to do it if I’m too lazy for the remote lol

locarno
locarno

So all your home appliances are smart ?

locarno
locarno

Why note update to Pie ?

Moosehead1
Moosehead1

Second speaker is great but not necessary to make a better call sound experience. Its about the quality of the main speakers. That is a engineering fact!,

Why buy a Note 10+ That is 4G? All carriers except Verizon will not offer a Note 10+ 5G until near the launch time of the Note 11+ in 2020. Why does the Note 10+ not decipher 4G and 5G for all carriers? Talk about millions of $ down the drain in sales for the new Note 10+ . SAD!

o0MHJ0o
o0MHJ0o

It’s funny you say that… Here in the UK, I can’t find anywhere except Samsung online store that is selling the Note10+ 4G.
Everywhere else is Note10 and Note 10+5G… With only one variation of storage (not RAM). Note10+ 4G/5G both have 12GB RAM. No 8GB.
Its pretty good difference between the two now. £869 for Note10 starting price.
And £1,099 for the Note10+5G.

locarno
locarno

No 4G version in UK ?

stondec
stondec

Wide spread availability of 5G will most certainly take a few years from now. I think it’s pointless buying a 5G phone at this point for most people. Also 5G is currently ravenously power hungry, just like 4G was in the beginning.

kav946
kav946

I actually saw a video on the note 10 and the 10 5g, and the phone is physically different due to the 5G. There has to be less metal, for the signal to work correctly, and a few other things.

In the end, why pay a premium for 5G construction and 5G circuity when 5G is very rare at the moment. I would expect the Note 11 or even the S12 to be the first combined devices that re all 5G. (If you need it, of course there is that option)

locarno
locarno

Please share link to this video. Sammobile said that Note 10+ 5G is the same as normal Note 10+.

siaho
siaho

You know, purely technically speaking a high quality speaker can totally work for calls as good (or better) as a high quality dedicated earpiece speaker so all that excuse “double as” is silly. Yes, I am engineer and know things or two on the topic. 🙂

locarno
locarno

Where you working ?

o0MHJ0o
o0MHJ0o

Was hoping for this! Finally, dedicated stereo speakers! Good bottom speaker + crap earpiece speaker didn’t make for great sound! Hoping this will be better!

Gunter2
Gunter2

Agree completely looking forward to seeing the reviews on sound quality. I’m very happy with the S9 plus to be honest particularly with Dolby Atmos enabled but if this is better, it should be great. 👍